If there was ever an instance where a corporation tried in every conceivable way to put out a bad product and then message in a way where the public was unwilling to buy said bad product to the extent that Murphy’s law permits, it would be Disney’s Mulan remake. From the announcement, I initially was rather hopeful about a Mulan remake. If we take out the grade A musical numbers from the original animated version, we are left with a rather mediocre film with its terrible messaging, inconsistent artwork, and abundant historical inaccuracies. But the writers needed the villains to be Huns instead of Mongols because it rhymes with “sons.” For this reason, the original was received in China about as well as Taco Bell was in Mexico. Therefore, a serious remake that was faithful to the source material where the legend of Mulan originates would be a worthwhile endeavor.
But that is not what Disney would end up creating. Instead, Disney kept much of the basic plot elements of the original such as Mulan taking the place of her father and her pretending to be a male But once following the basic storyline of the original, the remake departs to embrace what every other crappy action movie or show is doing these days. In the original version, we see Mulan struggle because she had no prior training because she was very feminine. She has to work hard in order to keep up with the others and eventually does. This is character development. Instead, remake Mulan is a Mary Sue. She has an excess amount of chi which is Chinese for midi-chlorians and everyone has to basically come to grips with how awesome she is. Welcome to 2020 where Hollywood forgot how to write (strong female characters).
But the issues with the Mulan failure were public first when the lead actress voiced her support for the CCP and their actions in Hong Kong. This safe action on her part created much distaste in the American public which has since become increasingly hostile towards the Chinese government. Disney would ultimately compound this bad PR by filming in locations where the Chinese operate concentration camps on the Uighur population. This was enough to make Americans not see the movie on principle, and perhaps enough to not allow the movie to recuperate the $200 Million spent on production.
However with global box offices, it could have still netted a profit, and that’s where Disney really refused to act in its unified best interest. But rather than salvage box office revenues, Disney decided to scare the general public in to a never-ending lockdown over a virus that is ultimately less threatening than the seasonal flu when you take into account the 94% of deaths have multiple co-morbitities and testing yields an extraordinary amount of false positives.
Will corporate America learn from this compounded disaster Disney sought upon itself? Probably not. The largest corporations are the greatest benefactors of COVID-1984 policies. Disney and other corporations have more funds to play with while the government radiates small businesses like a cancer. So while the Mulan money pit is a lesson about fiduciary corporate consistency, it is unlikely one that will be heeded, and ultimately it will take many more such lessons in order to sink in or sink Disney.